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Curated research library of TV news clips regarding the NSA, its oversight and privacy issues, 2009-2014

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Primary curation & research: Robin Chin, Internet Archive TV News Researcher; using TV News Archive service.

Speakers

Keith Alexander
General, Director of the National Security Agency, Chief of the Central Security Service and Commander of the United States Cyber Command.
MSNBCW 07/31/2013
Video of Black Hat Hackers Convention in Las Vegas: Hayes: Keith Alexander, the head of the NSA, one of the most powerful men in the world, a man who up until now has been content in the shadows, defending himself on video, before a crowd peppered with hecklers. Alexander: our nation takes stopping terrorism as one of the most important things. Audience: freedom. Alexander: exactly. And with that, when you think about it, how do we do that. Because we stand for freedom.
Chris Hayes
Host of All In with Chris Hayes
MSNBCW 05/07/2015
Hayes: Today for the first time, a high level federal court ruled that one of the programs disclosed by Edward Snowden in 2013 is illegal. The opinion for the unanimous three-judge panel, second circuit U.S. court of appeals, reads as a harsh criticism of the government's argument that a massive NSA program to collect in bulk the domestic phone records of millions of Americans is lawful under section 215 of The Patriot Act. Judge Gerald Lynch wrote
Jameel Jaffer
Deputy Legal Director, ACLU and Director of the ACLU's Center for Democracy
MSNBCW 05/07/2015
Jaffer: It's a big deal. It's a great ruling. We've been waiting for it for a long time now. It's a case that we filed right after the first Snowden disclosures. This was the first program that was disclosed. Hayes: This was the big bombshell on the today by the way, they keep going to your cell phone providers and saying just give us everyone's call records. Jaffer: Every day, every day they get from all the major telecommunications providers a list of, you know, essentially this log of who you called and when you called them, how long you spoke to them for and they have that for everybody, not just suspected terrorists or suspected criminals, everybody. And we challenged the lawfulness of that program. Both on statutory grounds and on constitutional grounds. And the ruling today is a ruling that the program violates the statute. In other words, the law doesn't authorize the government to collect information on this scale. So it's, you know, a big deal.
Jameel Jaffer
Deputy Legal Director, ACLU and Director of the ACLU's Center for Democracy
MSNBCW 05/07/2015
Hayes: So just to be clear here, right, there's The Patriot Act, which is the statute, there's the U.S. constitution. constitutional grounds. This ruling says doesn’t touch the constitutional question, right? Jaffer: That's right. So we had argued both. We had said it violates the statute. The Patriot Act doesn't allow it. Hayes: Even The Patriot Act doesn't allow this. The text of the law that got passed in the wake of 9/11 –even that has limits. Jaffer: even that has limits. And we said if you disagree with us, then it violates the constitution. But the court didn't disagree with us. The court said we agree with you, The Patriot Act authorizes a lot of things but doesn't authorize this.
Jameel Jaffer
Deputy Legal Director, ACLU and Director of the ACLU's Center for Democracy
MSNBCW 05/07/2015
Hayes: How did this even get into court? I mean, so many of these cases have been kicked out of court on what's basically national security grounds. Jaffer: That's right. Hayes: How did you guys get this heard? Jaffer: We argued a case just before the Snowden disclosures in the Supreme Court challenging a different surveillance program and the Supreme Court held 5-4 that we didn't have standing, we didn't have the right to be there because we couldn't prove that our communications had been monitored. And, you know, that was a very demoralizing decision. But then just months after, just weeks after, in fact, that decision, the Snowden disclosures came and gave us among other things standing to challenge this program. Hayes: Because just on its face, everyone – Jaffer: Well, everybody is subject to the program. We happen to be, the ACLU happens to be a customer of Verizon Business Networks which is the company that was the recipient of the order that Edward Snowden disclosed.
Jameel Jaffer
Deputy Legal Director, ACLU and Director of the ACLU's Center for Democracy
MSNBCW 05/07/2015
Jaffer: We get this decision coincidentally at a time when Congress is already in this heated debate about government surveillance, and we're in this heated debate because the provision, The Patriot Act provision that underlies this particular program is set to sunset, to expire on June 1st. So Congress is already debating what should we do between now and June 1st? Should we reauthorize the program, reauthorize Section 215, or let it sunset, or do something else? Reform the provisions, scale it back in some ways. And so this decision kind of throws all of that into a degree of chaos. Hayes: Right, because if that weren't the case, then it would be fairly clear, right, the government would probably appeal. The Supreme Court grants it or not. They would hear it Jaffer: That's right. Hayes: But if the thing is going to sunset, anyway, I mean it would essentially -- if it expires or is amended in some ways, it's no longer a live issue, right? So it might just be taken out Jaffer: it could certainly have an effect on litigation. And if it sunsets, you're right, it mainly moots the case, most of the case.
Jameel Jaffer
Deputy Legal Director, ACLU and Director of the ACLU's Center for Democracy
MSNBCW 05/07/2015
Jaffer: One of the things I think this decision is valuable for, or one of the reasons it's valuable is I think it makes clear that the reforms being considered by Congress right now don't go far enough because the reforms are being championed by people who are truly committed to privacy, but they've had to make a lot of concessions to the intelligence community. And so the bill makes some reforms at the margins. It's good in some respects but it raises concerns in other respects. This decision I think is going to strengthen the hand of those of us who have been calling for more far-reaching reforms than have been considered so far.
Jameel Jaffer
Deputy Legal Director, ACLU and Director of the ACLU's Center for Democracy
MSNBCW 05/07/2015
Hayes: Is this the clearest -- the clearest case of all that we've learned about these programs throughout the Snowden docs and through other reporting? Jaffer: Yes mean, is it the worst surveillance program, is that what you mean? Hayes: Yes. the clearest -- the sort of clearest violation of its own authority. Jaffer: Right. Hayes: Or the clearest constitutional problem. Jaffer: Well, it may be that this is the clearest violation of a statute, of a federal statute. Although there are other provisions -- other surveillance programs that are based on the same problematic legal theory that the government was advancing here. but there are other programs that in some ways are even worse, but they don't rely – Hayes: It's striking to consider this was happening in secret and there's no way to challenge it until you knew about it. Jaffer: That's right. Hayes: Then once it came out, it was challenged and the courts say it's not legal. Jaffer: That's right.
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